At least 37 people have been killed in the violence in northeast Delhi and police and paramilitary forces patrolled the streets in far greater numbers on Thursday. The political blame game continued with the BJP blaming the Congress and the AAP for “instigating people” against the Narendra Modi government.
The Delhi High Court adjourned Harsh Mander’s plea , seeking FIRs against leader who made hate speeches in Delhi, to April 13. After the HC order, the Delhi police said that they took the “conscious decision” of not filing FIRs against Kapil Mishra, Anurag Thakur and Parvesh Sharma for their “goli maro” slogans.
Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal announced relief of Rs 10 lakh for the families of the deceased and said that under AAP’s Farishte scheme the injured can get free medical treatement from private hospitals.
The Delhi Police said on Wednesday night that it had registered 18 FIRs and made 106 arrests.
Here are the updates from today:
6:30 pm: SIT To Probe Delhi Violence
5:45 pm: ‘Fake Liberals’ Responsible For Violence, Says Kapil Mishra
BJP leader Kapil Mishra, who had made a speech in northeast Delhi, a day before the violence started, has said on Thursday that violence in Delhi had been going on for the past two months and “fake liberals” were responsible for the violence.
Mishra, infamous for his ‘goli maro’ told the media, “No question is being asked to people who are talking about dividing country or those on whose terrace petrol bombs were found. But someone who only requested for road to be cleared as it was causing inconvenience to 35 lakh people is being called a terrorist.”
He said, “The violence has been going on for 90 days.”
Mishra, who has been accused of inciting the violence, also asked “Desh mein yeh kabtak chalega (How long will this go on in our country).”
5:40 pm Delhi Violence Death Toll Rises To 37
NDTV reports that the death toll in the Delhi violence now stands at 37.
4:43 pm: Arvind Kejriwal Announces Rs 10 Lakh For Families Of Deceased
Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Thursday announced relief of Rs 10 lakh for the kin of those who lost their lives in the violence that took place in northeast Delhi for the last four days.
The Delhi government also said that under its Farishte scheme those who need medical help can get free-of-cost treatment at private hospitals as well.
Amid accusations of an AAP councillor of killing an IB employee, Kejriwal said, “Any person who is found guilty should be given stringent punishment. If any Aam Aadmi Party person is found guilty then that person should be given double the punishment. There should be no politics on the issue of national security.”
4:20 pm: I’m Innocent, Says Tahir Hussain As He Is Accused Of IB Employee’s Death
AAP councilor Tahir Hussain, who has been blamed for the death of IB officer Ankit Sharma has claimed that he was not present in the building when the incident took place.
Sharma’s body was found in a drain on 25 February.
“Im very sad to hear about the death of IB officer Ankit Sharma. He should get justice. I am not involved in this incident. There should be a thorough investigation of this matter,” Hussain said.
He also said that the police was present in the building between February 24 and 4 pm on February 25.
3:22 pm: Pot Put On Boiler For 2 Months, Says Prakash Javadekar; Blames Congress For Delhi Violence
Union Minister Prakash Javadekar, in yet another press conference on the Delhi riots, claimed that it was a result of the Congress and AAP’s actions and words. “This is not a two-day violence, it was a pot put on a boiler for two months.”
Javadekar also said that it was speeches by Congress and AAP leaders that created “fear” among people which resulted in the violence in Delhi.
Javadekar said that the Gandhis provoked people against the government and failed to do the job of an Opposition.
3:06 pm: No FIR Against Kapil Mishra, Anurag Thakur Hate Speech; Delhi HC Adjourns Case Till April 13
The Delhi High Court bench of CJ DN Patel and Justice Hari Shankar have adjourned Harsh Mander’s plea for an FIR against speech by Kapil Mishra, Anurag Thakur and Parvesh Varma has been adjourned until April 13.
This came after the Delhi police told the Delhi HC that it has taken the conscious decision of not to file an FIR against Kapil Mishra, Anurag Thakur and Parvesh Varma.
The police said that at this state it won’t help restore normalcy in Delhi.
Solicitor General Tushar Mehta defended the BJP leaders saying the petitioner had chosen only these three speeches in the petition, but there were other hate speeches that existed as well.
Colin Gonsalves, however told the court, ”‘Go and Kill’ has become the favourite slogan of a particular political party... These attackers are also participating in the rallies held by these political leaders”
1:04 pm: Urged President To Use Power To Protect Rajdharma, Says Manmohan Singh
Former prime minister Manmohan Singh, addressing the media, said, “We called upon President to suggest to him that what has happened in last four days in Delhi is a matter of great concern and a matter of national shame in which at least 34 people have died and 200 people are injured, it is a reflection on total failure of Central government.”
“We urged the president to use his power to protect rajdharma,” Singh said.
12:50 pm: Preserve Life, Liberty, Property Of Citizens: Congress Tells President In Memorandum
The Congress party along with interim president Sonia Gandhi, and former prime minister Manmohan Singh submitted a memorandum to the President Ram Nath Kovind.
Gandhi said that they requested Kovind to ensure “life, liberty and property” of citizens were preserved.
12:30 pm: Now, Death Toll From Delhi Violence At 33
11:20 am: US Religious Rights Body Politicising Issue, Says MEA
Even as the death toll in the Delhi riots increased to 32, the Ministry of External Affairs said that comments made by the United States Commission on International Religious Freedom on the riots were “inaccurate”.
The MEA claimed that sections of the media and the US body on religious freedom were trying to politicise the issue.
The religious rights body had condmened the Delhi riots saying:
“United States Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) expresses grave concern over the ongoing violence taking place in Delhi, India’s capital city. As President Donald Trump’s inaugural visit to India winds down, northeastern Delhi has been rocked by deadly rioting, with reports of violence and mobs specifically targeting Muslims. So far, more than 20 people have been killed in the violence and close to 200 injured. According to reports, several mosques have also been set alight or vandalized. Many Muslim residents have been forced to flee the area. This unrest comes in the wake of widespread protests against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act following its passage in December 2019.”
11:08 am: Ravi Shankar Prasad Clarifies On Justice Muralidhar’s Transfer Amid Controversy
10:19 am: Death Toll In Delhi Riots Rises To 32
News18 India and PTI report health department officials are saying that the death toll in the Delhi riots have gone up to 32.
10:05 am: Empty Streets, Security Forces In North East Delhi
The latest visuals from north east Delhi’s Jafrabad, Seelampur, Maujpur and Babarpur show empty streets and security forces with weapons on Thursday morning.
9:49 am: Fire Department Received 19 Calls In Early Hours Of Thursday From North East Delhi
Violence in north east Delhi continued through the night of Wednesday and early morning of Thursday. Fire Department director Atul Garg told ANI that they received 19 calls between 12 am and 8 am on Thursday.
Garg said, “We received 19 calls from 12 am till 8 am today from the violence affected areas of north east Delhi. More than 100 firemen have been deployed. The four fire stations in these areas have been provided with extra fire tenders.”
9.02 am: GTB hospital reports one more death, toll at 28
8.54 am: AAP party councillor Tahir Hussain’s statement on Delhi violence
In a video statement, Hussain said his house was attacked by a mob on February 24 and that he had not been involved in any violence.
He said, “The claims being spread about me are wrong. My family and I ran for our lives and am living with an acquaintance.”
8.39 am: 85-year-old woman was burnt to death in her home in Gamri extension
Scroll’s Aarefa Johari reports that an armed mob of around 100 people had set shops and houses on fire in Gamri extension, near Khajuri Khas, on February 25.
Eighty-five-year-old Akbari died in the fire on the third floor of her house.
8.27 am: More reports of arson and unrest
More reports of arson and unrest have come in from northeast Delhi’s Bhajanpura, Maujpur and Karawal Nagar areas on late Wednesday night, Scroll reported.
8.14 am: Bernie Sanders slams Trump’s response to Delhi violence
Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders here accused US President Donald Trump of failing on the issue of human rights.
Slamming the US president, Sanders said the Trump’s statement regarding the violence in New Delhi during his India visit was a “failure of leadership”.
8.04 am: Delhi HC judge hearing the case transferred
Delhi High Court judge Justice S Muralidhar has been transferred to the Punjab and Haryana High Court.
Justice Muralidhar had pulled up the Centre, the Delhi government and the Delhi Police’s for their response to the violence . He was also one of two judges to hold the midnight hearing which directed for the safe passage to hospitals for victims of the violence.
The notification for his transfer was issued on Wednesday night by the Centre, NDTV reported. It came two weeks after the transfer had been recommended by the Supreme Court collegium.
7.55 am: Death toll hits 27
What happened on Wednesday
BJP’s Union minister Prakash Javadekar and Ravi Shankar Prasad claimed the Congress was “politicising the violence” after acting Congress chief Sonia Gandhi asked for details of the action taken by the Union and Delhi governments to prevent and contain the violence.
Meanwhile, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal called the situation “alarming”. He addressed the Delhi assembly on Wednesday evening and said, “People of Delhi do not want violence. All this has not been done by the ‘aam aadmi’. This has been done by some anti-social, political and external elements. Hindus and Muslims in Delhi never want to fight.”
National Security Advisor Ajit Doval visited the northeast Delhi, where he met with families affected by the violence. On the streets, a Muslim man and woman spoke to him about feeling targeted and unsafe in their homes. Doval claimed the situation was ‘under control’ and everything would be okay.
The Supreme Court and Delhi High Court pulled up the Delhi police for failing to act and contain the violence.
The Delhi HC harshly condemned the riots in the city and now directed the police to consider filing FIRs against BJP leaders Kapil Mishra, Anurag Thakur and Parvesh Verma. It asked for the speeches to be played in court after the Delhi police said they hadn’t seen videos of it.
Later in the night, the Delhi Police said it has registered 18 FIRs and made 106 arrests.